Tipoff for the South Florida Gold professional basketball team got off to a high flying start at the Coral Springs Gymnasium in back-to-back weekend games against the Daytona Sharks. The Gold dropped the opener game on Friday, Nov. 13 to the Sharks 115-99, but came back the next night to win 120-106.
The Gold came into the American Basketball Association season with high expectations, after finishing last season as the number three ranked club in the 100 team league. The team is gearing up to take down the defending ABA champion, Jacksonville Giants.
The Gold’s Davorn Bryant had a game high 33 points in his team’s victory on Saturday night. Teammate Scott Draughn added 19 points and a game high 13 rebounds. Gold point guard Ray Taylor got his teammates involved with 10 assists, while teammate Jeff Remmington chipped in with 18 points and nine assists. The Sharks Latraius Mosley led his team with 29 points in the loss.
Coach JR Gamble has been at the helm for three seasons with the Gold and went deep into his bench with 12 players hitting the hardwood. His aim was to give out valuable game time experience, while bringing fresh legs on the court. Gamble also coaches at Atlantic Christian Academy in West Palm Beach.
“I love coaching these guys because you expect them to have a better understanding of the game and have a high talent level,” Gamble said. “You can do more intelligent things on the court, but you can’t forget the basics. It’s a process that we have to go through and tonight our team showed some heart and toughness. We have a lot of work to do, but we got a good shot to compete for the championship.”
This season’s positive outlook for the Gold is due to the construction of a roster filled with international and local talent. Owner Michale Watson put together the team, where 14 of the 15 players have a local connection to the South Florida area.
“We have great talent here in South Florida and this team was put together to win a championship,” Watson said. “I attribute our opening game loss to first game jitters, but the second game showed what we’re capable of. We play a fast pace game and last season we averaged 140 points per game. You have to be in shape to play in the ABA. Our goal is championship or bust.”
Gold player Brandon LaCue is a Fort Lauderdale native and was a standout player for Dillard High School. He has won numerous titles as a slam dunk champion and played for the Harlem Globetrotters from 2010 to 2014. Now he entertains the South Florida Gold and ABA audiences with his high flying aerial dunks.
“This is a good experience playing in the ABA and at the end of the day this is basketball, which I love to do,” LaCue said. “I’m looking to get to the highest level I can possibly get to and see where this leads me. We’re a run and gun team and I love it.”
The team will play a 25 game schedule. Fans can catch the Gold home games at the Coral Springs Gymnasium or at Fort Lauderdale’s JC Carter Park. For more information, visit SFLGold.com.